Harsher prison sentences have meant Australia is jailing more people than at any time in the last two decades -- while rates for most violent crimes continue to fall. What's the connection?

Corrective services data recently released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics shows the number of people in prison on an average day in Australia was over 36,000 in June this year -- the highest number since the ABS began collecting imprisonment data in 1998, and the highest imprisonment rate ever as well: 196.5 Australians per 100,000 adult population.